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DIY, Inspiration

8 Summery DIY Ideas

July 15, 2010

Hello Friends, it is Leslie here with eight summery DIY ideas I found. Even if it is winter where you are I hope you find some of these ideas inspiring.

8 Summery DIY Ideas

1. Lots of quick and easy ideas for cleaning up your home’s entryway can be found at Real Simple like this one or this one. I love the painted on floor mat in this front hall!
2. Check out the directions on how to use colorful dyes to brighten up any basic canvas shoe on Martha Stewart Living.

8 Summery DIY Ideas

3. Benita of Chez Larsson shares her fabulous organization tips for her home office here and here.
4. Benita also explains about how she organizes her photographs in this post. There are lots of really good home improvement projects and ideas that Benita shares at Chez Larsson, I am sure you will enjoy reading more once you visit her!

8 Summery DIY Ideas

5. Even though it is Winter in Australia, Donna Hay still has some beautiful summer entertaining recipes and ideas here.
6. I think poufs are everywhere because they are an easy way to add color or update a sitting area. Here is a pattern to make your own by Amy Butler. You can find more information about the pattern and how much fabric you will need on Amy’s gorgeous site right here.

8 Summery DIY Ideas

7. Isn’t this DIY chevron rug project amazing? Please visit the Little Green Notebook Blog by Pearl Street Interiors to read about how to make an inexpensive Ikea rug not something fabulous all by yourself.
8. I had to end with this delicious looking cherry crumble cake as it would be perfect for a picnic or with tea while doing a little reading. Mowie of Mowielicious is always whipping up something incredible and I am sure you will enjoy checking out his beautiful blog.

I hope you have found a project or two that may spark your creative energy this week. I will see you back here soon, until then take care and thank you. — Leslie.

P.S. Holly and I spent the day together, she says hello to all of you! xo

DIY

Affordable Flower Vases

June 10, 2010

I know this isn’t a ground breaking decorating idea but I found an image today in Karaku’s etsy shop and love the idea of stamping waxy paper bags and adding flowers inside. It’s pretty and simply, isn’t it? It would be nice to line these up on a table for outdoor dining or to use them for showers as inexpensive “vases”. Inside you can use a clear glass (even just a basic water glass, shorter than the bag of course — but the weight of it will hold the bag in place and glass will hold the water for the flowers. It’s the simplicity that I think is so charming and really makes a statement.

Affordable Flower Vases

You can buy the waxy square paper bags here and some rubber stamps from Japan here. Would you try this idea?

(images: kakaku)

DIY

Vinyl Tablecloth As Wallpaper?

May 24, 2010

Hello and happy Monday to you! I’ve slowly been coming down from the whole food poisoning bout that I had… I thought my illness was a cold but no, it was definitely something I ate and it nearly landed me in the hospital. I will visit the doctor tomorrow just to make sure I’m nearly over this. It’s been a tough week! Yesterday I was able to get out for the first time in days and went to a garden festival (link here) and enjoyed the beautiful flowers, plants, tents filled with vendors selling their wares, and wonderful food tents though I wasn’t able to eat a thing as my appetite is gone for what feels like forever. But I did find a pretty spring blouse, a small silver bird and a watery blue-green ceramic planter in an organic heart shape that I just love. A few nice things always lifts the spirits! The festival, fresh air, sunshine was all very nice but after a few hours I was exhausted and ended up home on the sofa with a pot of tea and a stack of magazines and a DVD which ended up being equally very nice. I love lazy Sundays!

Vinyl Tablecloth As Wallpaper?

In my stack ‘o mags, I pulled out the June issue of VTWonen magazine and on page 130 I stopped and stared at the wall believing it to be vintage wallpaper with doilies on it. Then I checked the sources and nothing was listed but noticed instead that it was not wallpaper at all but a vinyl tablecloth cleverly adhered to it! Well imagine that… I love seeing things used in ways that rebel a bit against their intended purpose… almost like this tablecloth told the homeowner, “Hey you, loosen up a bit and stop following tradition and just throw me on the wall already, will ya?” and the homeowner followed orders.

Don’t you adore this idea? I’m wondering how, long term, you’d adhere a vinyl tablecloth to a wall without ruining the wall? Ideas? And in what rooms would this be practical as it wouldn’t work in a formal dining room and certainly not in a bathroom. I imagine this working though in a child’s play room or in an eating nook as shown, especially if you have little ones, this would be a great easy-to-clean budget idea for sprucing up dull walls. It may also be a nice touch in the mud room, laundry room or entryway. And now this has me thinking of alternate ways to use vinyl tablecloths and I wonder how well they’d work as throw rugs (may be a bit slippery so I imagine you’d have to put thought into this before just tossing one down). Could also work as flooring on a small covered balcony if you adhered it properly… Hmmm. What do you think? Where do you see a vinyl tablecloth other than the table? Perhaps you could cut one and frame it as art too?

This photograph was styled by Judith Dekker (does anyone have a link to her portfolio online?) and photographed by Alexander Van Berge.

(photo: vtwonen)

DIY

DIY Cat Bed via Hindsvik

April 21, 2010

I don’t have pets but I grew up with cats, dogs and a parakeet named Snoopy who was my BFF for several years. I’ll always have a soft spot for sweet little animals plus I’m hoping to adopt a fur kid in the near future and I’m currently trying to make a decision – cat or dog? Today when I came across this simple DIY cat bed that Daniel & Valeria at Hindsvik posted on their blog I knew I had to direct you over to see it. If you love clean, modern lines and have a pet (let’s face it, most pet stores do not have tons of cool options for beds!), this project just may be the cat’s meow!

DIY Cat Bed via Hindsvik

Visit Hindsvik to see the entire step-by-step process.

DIY Cat Bed via Hindsvik

And a huge P.S. — they also have a really rad etsy shop where they sell vintage goodies. I am DYING to own this snail planter

(image: hindsvik)

DIY

Pimp Your Bookends

March 10, 2010

Ha ha, I have to laugh at my clearly unimaginative title. But I couldn’t think of a better name when I saw the horses that Nicole Hill Gerulat just pimped and shared on her blog. She picked them up at Homegoods in this sort of coppery color and viola! from copper to eye-popper! Now that made me laugh again because I sounded soooo HGTV, right? Maybe I should just let the pictures speak for themselves…

Pimp Your Bookends

I bet you will think twice the next time you spot some shabby bookends at the thrift store. If they have a great silhouette just paint those bad boys and rock ’em!

And a big P.S. — Are you not absolutely green over her massive Penguin classic book collection? I am!

(images: nicole hill gerulat)

DIY

Product Photography & Styling

February 19, 2010

Do you want to know more about product styling and photography? A few days ago a reader commented on my most recent Etsy Take Five Tuesday column expressing frustration because she has a hard time taking good product shots for her store, and as a result felt overlooked by bloggers (like me) who are so particular about the images that we share on our sites.

Product Photography & Styling

I really appreciated hearing her thoughts and I felt bad because I know how it feels to be in that position as years ago I had no clue how to take photos and while I’m still not a professional, I have grown tremendously in this area in comparison to my humble beginnings and I wanted to let her in on how I made progress. I then thought that her frustration may be what others are feeling out there but who are too shy to say something — especially when their favorite blogs won’t feature their products due to photography that could be a bit more professional looking without breaking the bank. Truth is, I think anyone who has a home-based business, a computer, and a camera (point and shoot, DSLR, doesn’t matter) should pay attention to the photos that they are taking of their products because that is one of the major factors that can make or break their business. And it’s SO easy to quickly make improvements in this area… so why not try it?

In fact, in the class I am currently instructing with Leslie Shewring is covering many blog-related topics and one just so happens to be photography and styling for photos that appear on your blog (or web shop). Leslie does a beautiful job explaining things and students in our class seem to be gaining more and more confidence in their abilities to pretty-up their photos as the weeks go by. And though I cannot spill what we’ve been sharing in class, I can share some links that I’ve found personally helpful.

Some of these focus on food styling but that’s not the point, you can replace food with any object you’d like – the point is to examine the techniques shown. I want everyone to take pride in what they are sharing online, whether in their Flickr account, on Etsy, on their blogs, the point is that when you feel confident about the work you are presenting others will want to share it, too. So if you are frustrated and wonder about photography, styling, how to create a budget home photo studio for your small business then these links are for you:

As far as magazines and books are concerning, I can’t direct you there as much because quite frankly, most feel wayyyy over my head and bore me to death. But I just started reading Digital Photographer magazine and find their tutorials super helpful and perfect for all levels. It’s a British title that I think is available at large booksellers in the states because I first found it at Barnes & Noble, so check it out!

Hope these links help you! If you know of some other great websites, online tutorials, books, magazines… please share them with us because I’m sure lots of readers would be grateful for as much help in this area as possible.

(image: holly becker for decor8)

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